Date of Award

2020

Document Type

Thesis

Abstract

This case study follows the example of Rubenhold (2019) to examine the lives of the first five women killed by the Green River Killer, to give the victims a voice to tell their stories that Ridgway robbed from them, and to identify the social constructs that influence victim availability. To explore this issue, the study analyzed multiple sources of information: archival sources, monographs, articles, websites, and newspapers. In analyzing the effects of their upbringing—family history, educational backgrounds, and personal lives—this research will clarify the role that these factors played regarding where they spent their last day alive.

Using an intersectional lens helps interpret how these young women’s race, class, and gender were affected by the social system and their vulnerability in society. The qualitative data was beneficial as an explanatory means of the theoretical social constructs and to understand the themes that emerged from this data. This interpretation of these sources helped recognize the constructs that make up for the vulnerability of marginalized populations and why they are high-risk victims.Analyzing individual bodies, experiences, and lives will answer many questions regarding how identity is crucial for how one experiences life.

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